About the Urban Tree Canopy Assessment

Please note: the data from this assessment was obtained and compiled in 2010. It is merely a snapshot of the state of Saint Paul's urban forest canopy at that time and does not accurately reflect the canopy as it currently stands. Saint Paul Forestry has used this data over the last decade to help direct management decisions, improving the canopy and making the urban forest very different than it once was. Any updated canopy assessment data will be posted here as it becomes available.

The trees that comprise the urban forest of Saint Paul provide a variety of benefits. Trees are our largest source of green infrastructure and enhance the landscape by providing shade to homes, roads and parking lots, and provide color, beauty and character to the community. Trees also provide benefits behind the scenes, such as the interception and storage of rainwater and carbon, the reduction of noise pollution and have proven to reduce crime and stress. This page explores the various ways trees enhance our lives and provides insight into the urban forest of Saint Paul at various scales: the entire urban forest, planning districts, parcels, and individual trees. With the emerald ash borer poised to dramatically change the landscape of the urban forest, Saint Paul Forestry is continually collecting data and searching for the best ways to keep the urban forest healthy, diverse, and green.

The City of Saint Paul Urban Forest

In 2010, the University of Minnesota Spatial Analysis Laboratory performed a land cover classification for the City of Saint Paul defining tree canopy, impervious surface, buildings, water, grass and bare soil. The links below highlight the results of the classification. The documents are large and will take a few minutes to download.

Digital Classification and Mapping of Urban Tree Cover: City of Saint Paul {PDF}

City of Saint Paul Urban Tree Canopy Assessment 2011 {PDF}


  • Tree canopy covers 32.5% of the total land area of Saint Paul
  • 66.2% of Saint Paul is suitable for tree canopy cover
  • Residential, single-family parcels offer the greatest area for increased canopy cover

Canopy Comparisons:

  • Chicago, IL - 17.2%
  • New York City, NY - 24%
  • Des Moines, IA - 27%
  • Minneapolis, MN - 31.5%
  • Saint Paul, MN - 32.5%
  • Washington D.C. - 35%

What is the value of the trees in your yard? Find out by visiting the National Tree Benefit Calculator.

Last Edited: November 6, 2023